A Carron man whose colleague tragically lost her baby son seven days before her due date has been taking part in a charity hill trek every day in May in aid of stillbirth charity, SANDS.
Gordon MacNicol (40), who is originally from Stenhousemuir, decided to take on the arduous challenge after feeling he wanted to do something to help his friend and other families going through similar tragedies.
The Falkirk Job Centre staff member said: “When I heard the sad news I just knew I wanted to do something, anything to help. I’d been watching the programme about former SAS soldier Ant Middleton climbing Everest which inspired me to raise money for the SANDS charity which I knew was providing vital support to my friend and her family at this very difficult time.”
The 418-metre high Dumyat, which lies at the western end of the Ochils, might be significantly smaller than Everest’s 8,848 metre summit but, by Friday, Gordon will have actually exceeded that height as altogether he will have climbed an impressive 13,000 metres in total over 31 days.
He said: “It’s been quite tough going as I have a problem with my knees but the Foot Store in Falkirk which specialises in sports injuries has been helping me by offering complimentary massages throughout the month – their assistance really has been invaluable and I can’t thank them enough.
“Friends and family have been keeping me company most days which has also been a real boost and I’ve only had to do it on my own once. More than 80 folk must have accompanied me up the hill over the course of the month – the support has been fantastic.
“Even my daughter Emma, who is only 11 will have done it 16 times by Friday and my son, Ben, who’s just four has been up with me once too.”
To mark his final Dumyat descent Gordon has arranged a special barbecue at the Sheriffhall gateside area and is inviting friends and family to join him for some well-deserved food and drinks.
Larbert-based family business Malcolm Allan are supplying burgers and sausages for the barbecue while Oliphant Bakers Ltd in Falkirk are providing rolls and refreshments will be served courtesy of AG Barr.
Gordon said: “I would like to urge anyone who would like to come along to both the climb or the barbecue to do so to give this one final push. We’ve got over £700 online and another few hundred to come in. It would be great to hit the £1,500 mark.”
Gordon will also be donating some funds to PoppyScotland through his charity challenge. To make a contribution online visit www.justgiving.com/Gordon-Macnicol